By Hrach Melkumian
Armenian military prosecutors announced on Tuesday their third arrest in connection with the August 6 killing of three soldiers at a military unit stationed in the northern city of Vanadzor.
The conscripts, two of them brothers, were shot to death early in the morning as they guarded a local army warehouse. Investigators promptly arrested two other soldiers on charges of involvement in the shooting.
The head of the criminal investigation, Khachik Ghaltaghian, told RFE/RL that the third detainee, Vahram Yesayan, is a civilian resident of Vanadzor. He refused to detail accusations leveled against the man, however. According to other sources, Yesayan lives next door to the warehouse.
Armenia’s chief military prosecutor, Gagik Jahangirian, said last week that the killings stemmed from one of the arrested soldiers paying one of the victims $50 to arrange a leave. But it is still not clear which of the suspects sneaked into the room where the soldier who had received the money and two others were sleeping. The investigators say only that the shots were fired from a single assault rifle.
Meanwhile, the lawyer for one of the arrested soldiers, Arman Hovsepian, claimed on Tuesday that the military prosecutors are preventing him from meeting his client.